It's not about heads-in-beds and fine linens anymore, Ritz-Carlton's social communication is all about memory-making. The company says it is in the business of creating indelible memories that last a lifetime.
Interestingly, while Ritz-Carlton doesn't focus on a community per se, the individuals with whom they engage make up a community of their own. "We speak of them as a global affluent tribe; not to be confused with pure wealthy high net-worth travelers," said Allison Sitch, Vice President of Global Public Relations at The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company. "People are connected by passion points, which usually would lend themselves to communities of people who share those passions - such as fine wines, classic cars - but interestingly for Ritz-Carlton, our consumers are connected by the virtue of the fact they are Ritz-Carlton consumers. You generally find real loyalists that have an affinity for the brand because of the one-to-one relationships they develop - not just with us, but with other travelers."
Sitch said that guests of the Ritz-Carlton often want to converse with their friends about their experience. "Not because they want to boast," she said, "But because they often give them nugget of their experiences... It's usually about the details - not how big the chandelier, or how many swimming pools - but about a component of service that was so personalized it blew them away. The social channels allow us to interact with them, to celebrate those moments and memories of those experiences. And provides a vehicle for them to share those memories with other people."
Ritz-Carlton has approached the various social media platforms to enhance or extend that story-telling and memory-making. "Each social channel we set up plays a different role to play in the world of memory-making," said Sitch, "different stages of guest journey."
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